Private Schools The First Choice for Many College-Bound Students
There are a growing number of educational options available. As a result, many families are choosing top private schools for their children. Private school enrollment has been steadily increasing due to a variety of reasons, and one of these is that the children who attend these schools are demonstrating greater academic achievement.
Currently, according to the Council for American Private Education (CAPE), there are 33,619 private schools operating in the United States. These schools serve pre-kindergarten through 12th grade, and have an enrollment of 5.4 million students.
Given the total number of schools in the United States,, 25% of these are private and enroll ten percent of the nation’s pre-kindergarten through 12th-grade students, according to CAPE. It is interesting to note that larger cities tend to have higher private school enrollments. Recent figures show that private schools in large cities have almost 1.5 times the enrollment rate that public schools have within the same areas.
Early education programs are making a significant difference when children enter kindergarten. When three separate studies were reviewed, it was found that 80% of the children who attended high-quality early education preschool programs outperformed children who did not attend these types of programs.
There were 4,428,000 three-to-four-year-old children attending preschool from 2011-to-2013. It’s been shown that when these children reached kindergarten, they performed better in both math and reading than those kindergarteners that didn’t attend preschool. When tested, these children also performed 21% higher on both math and reading tests.
A large percentage, approximately 79%, of private schools are religiously affiliated, according to CAPE. Most private schools tend to be small, and 87% of these religiously affiliated schools also have less than 300 students enrolled.
The benefits of private school education appear to make a significant difference on high school Scholastic Achievement Scores (SAT) as well. The class of 2014’s SAT scores, according to CAPE, made an impact on the national average.
The mean scores for public school seniors:
- Reading: 492
- Writing: 478
- Math: 501
The mean scores for independent school seniors:
- Reading: 535
- Writing: 542
- Math: 580
The mean scores for religious school seniors:
- Writing: 527
- Math: 537
When students earn higher SAT scores, they have a greater chance of being accepted into the college or university of their choice. Furthermore, more of these students actually apply to college as a result of their higher scores.
According to the National Center for Education Statistics, more private high school students are applying to college. It’s been found that 88% of private high school students apply when compared to 57% of public high school students.
When children attend private schools from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade, it appears that they have a stronger academic foundation than those students who do not. It’s possible, however, for children to transfer from a public to a private school at different grades.